Simplifying & Automating Processes for Development of Applications
Public Sector Transformation

Project Started on

Jan

2012

Project Ended on

Jan

2012

Current Status

We will launch shortly an online portal to allow developers to make online submission of construction development application. We installed a web-based tracking system AMANDA in all local authorities to allow electronic processing of development applications.

Project status

Yellow
  • On Track
  • Slightly Off-track
  • Very Off-track
  • Stalled

This project responds to the Doing Business indicators for dealing with construction permits.

In 2007, a review spearheaded by the Cabinet Office identified a number of inefficiencies in the development application review process that caused complications and delays for potential developers.

The Government responded to those findings by designing a project that would simplify the application process and reduce the response timeframe for all applications to a maximum of ninety (90) days. 

Some of the major achievements under the project to date include:

  • The establishment of a Development Assistance Centre (DAC) and documentation of the applications process to provide guidance to developers in the submission of their applications.
  • Gazetting of a new Building Code aligned to international standards.
  • Implementation of the AMANDA web-based tracking system in more than 50% of all Parish Councils (PCs) to allow online data input and application tracking.
  • Promulgation of a formal policy requiring a maximum 90-day response time for all categories of development applications.

These actions have allowed us to improve our Doing Business Rank under this indicator moving from 74 out of 178 countries in 2008, to 52 out of 189 countries in 2014.

However, while the Government has improved the development applications review process, we still have a far way to go.

Further improvements are planned, over the next five years, to implement the AMANDA web-based tracking and monitoring system in all Parish Councils, as well as other government agencies that are required to provide comments on development applications.

This will allow us to obtain tighter management of the system and allow developers to track their applications online.

We will have to amend our policies and legislation to enable the improved business process changes and use of technology, and streamline the methodology for charging and payment of fees to ensure transparency.

We will develop a National Spatial Plan, and ensure that each Local Planning Authority (LPA) has a Local Sustainable Development Plan and Development Order to provide applicants and Parish Councils with a clear point of reference for requirements and priorities for national development.

 In keeping with making the applications process easier, the Government will also ensure our post application approval monitoring processes are strengthened to improve compliance rates for developers.

By 2018 we would have taken very important steps towards improving our Doing Business Ranking under this indicator to be closer in line with the regional benchmark.

We expect that this will encourage an increase in the number of investment projects across the island.

This project responds to the Doing Business indicators for dealing with construction permits. In 2007, a review spearheaded by the Cabinet Office revealed a number of inefficiencies in the development application review process that caused complications and delays for potential developers, and ultimately created an environment that appeared hostile to infrastructure investments. 

The Government responded to those findings by designing a project that would simplify the application process and reduce the response timeframe for all applications to a maximum of ninety (90) days.  Some of the major achievements under the project to date include the establishment a Development Assistance Centre (DAC) and documentation of the applications process to provide guidance to developers in the submission of their applications; gazetting of a new Building Code aligned to international standards; implementation of the AMANDA web-based tracking system in more than 50% of all  Parish Councils (PCs) to allow online data input and application tracking; and promulgation of a formal policy requiring a maximum 90-day response time for all categories of development applications. These actions have allowed us to improve our Doing Business Rank under this indicator moving from 74 out of 178 countries in 2008, to 52 out of 189 countries in 2014. However, as indicated in the table below, while the Government has improved the development applications review process we still have a far way to go.

Government has improved the development applications review process we still have a far way to go.

 

Jamaica

Global Benchmark

Regional Benchmark

Indicators

2008

2014

2008

2014

2008

2014

number of procedures

10

8

6

6

9

8

timeframe for obtaining permits

236

135

34

26

149

123

% per capita income cost

438

207

1.5

1.1

5.9

5.2

 

While much has been achieved under the project, further improvements are planned over the next five years to, implement the AMANDA web-based tracking and monitoring system in all Parish Councils, as well as the other government agencies that are required to provide comments on development applications. This will allow us to obtain tighter management of the system and allow developers to track their applications online. We will have to amend our policies and legislation to enable the improved business process changes and use of technology, and streamline the methodology for charging and payment of fees to ensure transparency. We will develop a National Spatial Plan, and ensure that each Local Planning Authority (LPA) has a Local Sustainable Development Plan and Development Order to provide applicants and Parish Councils with a clear point of reference for requirements and priorities for national development. In keeping with making the applications process easier, the Government will also ensure our post application approval monitoring processes are strengthened to improve compliance rates for developers.

By 2018 we would have taken very important steps to improving our Doing Business Ranking under this indicator to be closer in line with the regional benchmark, which will encourage an increase in the number of investment projects across the island.
  • (_/_/_) We will launch shortly an online portal to allow developers to make online submission of construction development application. We installed a web-based tracking system AMANDA in all local authorities to allow electronic processing of development applications.

    This programme has taken many years to gain momentum but there have been quantum changes most recently. A full implementation plan for the improvement in the entire DARP system was prepared to address legislative and operational changes necessary for improvement the entire system. All Local Authorities and major commenting Agencies now have the web-based tracking system AMANDA installed for electronic processing of development applications. The AMANDA is a web-based application management system which will provide greater transparency in the approval process as applicants for building and development permits will be able to monitor and track the status and progress of their applications as it is reviewed by multiple agencies, and passes through the various stages of the approval process, holding entities to account for the length of time they take to process applications received. There are issues affecting the utilization of AMANDA and the focus in now on addressing these issues to ensure full utilization of the system.

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